Wednesday, December 11, 2013

7 Ways to prevent gum disease (periodontal disease)

7 Ways to prevent gum disease (periodontal disease)

You can’t overestimate the importance of good oral hygiene — not only for dental health, but for your overall wellbeing. Periodontal disease or gum disease is major risk factor in developing serious health conditions, including heart disease and diabetes. While treatment options for periodontal disease may be time-consuming, painful, and expensive, the preventive techniques are simple and effective:
1-     Proper brush: When it comes to your gum, not all brushes are created equally! Those old, hard, and rough brushes with inflexible and long bristles could only increase the chances of gum injury, loss of enamel, and risk of gum infections. Gum specialists recommend soft to medium brushes with an inch in length and half inch in width that are long enough to reach the back and sides of molar teeth.
2-     Effective brushing and flossing: You probably know that oral hygiene such as regular brushing and flossing is important to your teeth and gum health. But, do you know the proper techniques when it comes to correct brushing and or flossing?
3 Simple steps to perfect brushing:
I) Place the brush where the gum meets the tooth, with bristles resting along each tooth at a 45-degree angle.
II) Move the brush back and forth gently. Use short (tooth-wide) strokes.  Begin by brushing the outer tooth surfaces, followed by the inner tooth surfaces, and then the chewing surfaces of the teeth.  For the inside surfaces of the front teeth, gently use the tip of the brush in an up-and-down stroke.
III) Brush your tongue to help remove additional bacteria.  Flossing should finish the process.
3 Simple steps to perfect flossing:
I) Break off 18 inches of floss and wind most of it around the middle finger of one hand and the rest around the other middle finger
II) Gently rub the floss back and forth between the teeth, floss should be curved around each tooth when it reaches the gum.
III) Finally floss up and down between the teeth. Repeat with each tooth, including the outside of molar teeth.
Watch a short video on our dental library for a demonstration of proper flossing techniques
3-     Maintain a healthy Diet: Vitamin C: Marinating a good diet rich in Vitamin C can significantly reduce the risk of gum disease. Also, Calcium found in dairy products is critical for children and adults in order to have healthy gums and avoid tooth decay. Dairy products can help to clear the mouth of harmful sugars and protect against plaque.
4-     Use Mouth wash: Even though proper brushing and flossing can get rid of most of food and bacteria in your mouth, a rinse with a good mouth wash solution insures a thorough cleansing of the mouth.  Periodontists recommend mouthwash solutions with Anti-Microbial content preferably with no Alcohol in the list of ingredients.
5-     Quit Smoking: Smoking has shown to play as a risk factor in developing gum disease. For smokers, quitting is an important step toward regaining periodontal health.
6-     Manage Stress: although stress does not have a direct effect on gum disease, it does reduce the body’s immune system and makes it harder to fight infections such as gum infections.
7-     Straighten your smile: Misaligned or crooked teeth can not only affect your smile but they also can increase the risk of gum disease. It is significantly harder to clean and floss misaligned teeth. As such, incomplete plague removal can lead to buildups, gum bleeding, and eventually other forms of gum disease. If any of your teeth are facially displaced, it can cause the gums around it to recede. In severe overbite, teeth may come in contact with the gum tissue of the opposite side and cause irritation to the gums.

Dr. Elyassian is a Periodontist practicing in Orange County, CA. His office is now offering FREE consultation sessions for those who are concerned about the condition of their gum and oral health. Call us and request your FREE consultation today!

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